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Arkansas Governor Demands Changes To RFRA Bill

church-state-street-signs

As I noted this morning, the battle over RFRA laws and how they impact the arguments over gay rights and same-sex marriage are extending beyond Indiana, particularly to Arkansas where the state legislature approved a bill similar to Indiana’s just yesterday and sent it to Governor Asa Hutchinson. Earlier today, after an uproar that included […]

Trevor Noah To Replace Jon Stewart On The Daily Show

Trevor Noah

Comedy Central has chosen a relative unknown to replace Jon Stewart on The Daily Show: In December, Trevor Noah, a 31-year-old comedian, made his debut as an on-air contributor on “The Daily Show With Jon Stewart,” offering his outsider’s perspective, as a biracial South African, on the United States. “I never thought I’d be more […]

George W. Bush Gets CIA Award

George W Bush

President George W. Bush had a running battle with the CIA throughout his eight years in office. Now, they’ve given him an award.

Tammy Duckworth To Run Against Mark Kirk In 2016

Capitol Daytime

Congresswoman Tammy Duckworth, an Iraq War veteran who defeated Republican Congressman Joe Walsh in 2012, will run against Republican Senator Mark Kirk in 2016: WASHINGTON – Rep. Tammy Duckworth D-Ill., will announce a 2016 Senate bid likely on Monday, the Chicago Sun-Times has learned. She is aiming to win the Democratic nomination to run against […]

Yemen Civil War Becoming Regional

travel-suitcase

With everything going on in Libya, Egypt, Syria, and Tunisia, the last thing that the world needed was for unrest and war to spread to yet another country in the Middle East. Yemen, the poorest country in the Arabian Peninsula and a historic site of unrest, is the latest to be engulfed in the sectarian […]

Germanwings Plane Likely Crashed Deliberately by Co-Pilot

military-soldier-sunset

In a twist fitting for an M Night Shyamalan movie, there is growing evidence that there was malfeasance by the co-pilot that resulted in a deliberate crash of Germanwings flight 9525.

Obama Less Popular Than Fictional Presidents, More Popular Than Putin

houseOfCards21

A new poll indicates that most fictional Presidents are more popular than the real thing: Whether it’s the earnest Josiah Bartlet from “The West Wing” or the manipulative Frank Underwood in “House of Cards,” Americans prefer television presidents to their real-life POTUS, President Barack “No Drama” Obama. A Reuters-Ipsos poll taken this month found 54 […]

Indiana Senator Dan Coats To Retire

Capitol Dome

Indiana Republican Senator Dan Coats announced today that he will not be running for re-election in 2016: Republican Sen. Dan Coats of Indiana will not seek another term in office, he said Tuesday. Coats told the political news website Indy Politics that his age and his preference to legislate rather than campaign both played a […]

Rand Paul Supporters Crash Ted Cruz’s Announcement Speech

Liberty Univ Stand With Rand

A group of Liberty University students managed to get in some rather epic trolling at Ted Cruz’s speech today: LYNCHBURG, Va.—Sen.  Ted Cruz took the stage to declare his presidential candidacy at Liberty University Monday, surrounded by upwards of 10,000 cheering students. They weren’t all here by choice. Attendance at convocation at Liberty is mandatory, […]

Lee Kuan Yew, Founder And First Prime Minister Of Singapore, Dies At 91

Lee Kuan Yew

Lee Kuan Yew, the founding father and long-time Prime Minister of Singapore, died over the weekend at the age of 91: SINGAPORE — Lee Kuan Yew, who as its founding father and first prime minister transformed the tiny outpost of Singapore into one of the wealthiest and least corrupt countries in Asia, died on Monday […]

President Obama May Buy Magnum PI Home (No Word on Ferrari)

movie-popcorn-filmstrip

Someone has bought the estate where “Magnum P.I.” Based on no apparent evidence, POLITICO speculates that it’s going to be the Obama retirement home. When he’s done being president, could Barack Obama grow a mustache, don a Hawaiian shirt, and start driving a red Ferrari? Obama loves Hawaii – the land of his childhood, the […]

Irish Activist Commits Return Fraud, Gloats About it in Media

money-investing

A Facebook friend posted this Irish Central story (“Irish American buys all of Walmart’s offensive t-shirts, will return them March 18“) on her wall: Kevin Westley has an inventive solution to the annual issue of offensive Irish merchandise leading up to St. Patrick’s Day. Go to your local big box stores, buy all the t-shirts […]

Your Second Third Drink

cocktails-negroni-old-fashioned

You should stop at three drinks. But you can stop there more than once.

Mitt Romney To Fight Evander Holyfield For Charity

romney-ohio

With future Presidential ambitions apparently out of the picture, Mitt Romney appears to be moving on to a new career: Forget about Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather, the real fight of the century is scheduled for May 15 when Mitt Romney enters the ring to battle Evander Holyfield in Salt Lake City. Yes, you read […]

Vladimir Putin Reappears In Public After Ten Day Absence

Vladimir Putin Sunglasses

After  not being seen in public for nearly two weeks, which led to rumors of everything from health problems, to a coup attempt, to his becoming a father, Vladimr Putin appeared in public and seemed to put those rumors to rest: ST. PETERSBURG, Russia — Russian President Vladimir Putin resurfaced Monday, smiling and looking his […]

Dakota Meyer Engaged to Bristol Palin

dakota-meyer-bristol-palin

A headline I did not expect to see, courtesy the Army Times: “Dakota Meyer engaged to Bristol Palin.”

1965 in Photos

radio-tv-1965

The Atlantic’s Alan Taylor has 50 photos from 50 years ago.

Politinerds: The Dave Weigel Interview

Politinerds

This weeks episode of Politinerds featured an interview with David Weigel, currently a political reporter at Bloomberg News, and previously with Slate, The Washington Post, Reason magazine, and a host of other publications. We covered several topics with Dave, ranging from issues about how a reporter’s political opinions should impact their reporting, the role of […]

Oh Lord Won’t You Buy Me A Gulfstream G650

Gulfstream G650

Megachurch Pastor Creflo Dollar tells his followers that the Lord God wants him to have a private jet: The ministry of a prominent Georgia megachurch pastor and evangelist who teaches that God wants to bless the faithful with earthly riches is seeking donations to buy a luxury jet valued at more than $65 million. The […]

Bride Dumps Groom After He Fails Math Test

math-1+1=3

A bride in India dumped her fiance mere minutes before the wedding ceremony was about to start because he wasn’t good at math: NEW DELHI (AP) — An Indian bride walked out of her wedding ceremony after the groom failed to solve a simple math problem, police said Friday. The bride tested the groom on […]

Pi Day 3.14.15

pi-day

Cornell math prof Steven Strogatz is very excited about Pi day.

Francis to Follow Benedict, Predicts Short Papacy

church-state-street-signs

Pope Francis says he expects to serve only a short period and plans to follow his predecessor’s example of retiring rather than waiting to die in office.

Another Secret Service Incident Leads To Questions Of Drunk Driving And A Cover Up

Obama With Secret Service

Last week, two members of the Secret Service were involved in an incident near the White House that may have included driving while drunk: The Obama administration is investigating allegations that two senior Secret Service agents, including a top member of the president’s protective detail, drove a government car into White House security barricades after […]

Regarding the Logan Act

us-politics

The following, by law professor Steve Vladeck, is worth a read:  The Iran Letter and the Logan Act.

Photographing History (More Selma)

us-politics

  Via the LAT:  Selma photographer captured history on ‘Bloody Sunday’. The photos and descriptions are worth a look. The following passage struck me: “The world doesn’t know this happened because you didn’t photograph it,” King told Life magazine’s Flip Schulke, according to “The Race Beat,” a history of media coverage of the civil rights […]

Pre-1965 Literacy Tests

us-politics

For some rather remarkable examples of barriers to vote that existed prior to the passage of the Voting Rights Act, I would recommend the following:  Are You "Qualified" to Vote? Take a "Literacy Test" to Find Out

Boko Haram Pledges Support To ISIS

Boko Haram Nigerian Schoolgirls

Boko Haram, the Islamist terror group that has been a problem in Nigeria for several years now, has apparently pledged its allegiance to the Islamic State: With thousands of fighters and some parts of northeastern Nigeria under its control, Boko Haram is believed to be the largest jihadi group to pledge fidelity to the Islamic […]

ISIL Destroys Nimrud

nimrud-archeological-site

The gang calling itself the Islamic State has destroyed another historical site.

Supreme Court Sets Oral Argument In Same-Sex Marriage Cases For April 28th

law-scales-justice-flag

The Supreme Court has set oral argument in the same-sex marriage cases for April 28th: The Supreme Court will hear arguments over same-sex marriage on April 28 and make audio of the proceedings available later that day. The gay marriage cases mark the only time this term that the court has agreed to the quick […]

With Malice Toward None, With Charity Toward All

Lincoln Second Inaugural Address

One hundred fifty years ago today, as Union forces continued their encirclement of Robert E. Lee’ Army of Northern Virginia at Petersburg, Virginia, Abraham Lincoln delivered one of the great Inaugural Addresses in American history: Fellow-Countrymen: At this second appearing to take the oath of the Presidential office there is less occasion for an extended […]

Joint Iraqi-Iranian Operations in Tikrit

military-soldier-sunset

Iraqi army and Iranian army in joint offensive to retake Tikrit.

Coffee News (and Another Example of Bad Science Reporting)

intellectual-invention

First comes the spiffy headline via the BBC:  Regular coffee drinkers have ‘cleaner’ arteries Hooray! he thought, between sips of strong, black Colombian… But then, actually reading the article: Drinking a few cups of coffee a day may help people avoid clogged arteries – a known risk factor for heart disease – Korean researchers believe. […]

Some Charts for the Morning: Latin American Economies

travel-suitcase

Via The Telegraph:  Colombia: from failed state to Latin American powerhouse Some regional comparisons:  

In the Company of Misery

travel-suitcase

Via Bloomberg:  The 15 Most Miserable Economies in the World. Misery, as in the misery index (“unemployment rate + change in the consumer price index = misery”):

Barbara Mikulski Will Not Run For Re-Election In 2016

us-politics-republicans-democrats

Barbara Mikulski, the longest serving woman in Congressional history, has announced that she will not seek re-election in 2016: Sen. Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.), who has served in Congress longer than any woman in history, announced at a news conference Monday that she will retire from the Senate after five terms in office, three people familiar with her plans said. […]

Politinerds: The Jake Tapper Interview

Politinerds

The week’s episode of Poitinerds features another special guest, Jake Tapper, host of CNN’s The Lead with Jake Tapper and before that White House Correspondent for ABC News. Jazz Shaw and I talk with Jake about his career in journalism, what it’s like to host a daily news show in an era of fast breaking […]

From the “You Can’t Make this Stuff up” File (TP for Oil Edition)

travel-suitcase

Via Bloomberg:  Tissue Paper-for-Venezuelan Oil Swap Offered by Trinidad. The absurd nature of the headline aside, this is not a funny story at all given the utter disaster that is the Venezuelan economy.  The unnecessary and man-made nature of the the situation just adds to the tragedy.

Speaking of IRV

us-politics

My post on voting for Best Picture (and the ensuing comments) talked quite a bit about IRV (instant run-off voting).  Georgia is presenting a case where IRV might solve a problem (and is, apparently, at least being discussed). Via Peach Pundit:  Finding Alternatives to Runoff Elections Just Got More Urgent One of the most disruptive […]

Early Front-runner for Headline of the Year

money-bankruptcy

Via the BBC:  Urinating man claimed to be Star Trek’s Jean-Luc Picard

Latin American Stall?

travel-suitcase

An ominous headline from The Economist:  Latin America’s progress has stopped For the past three years, the poverty rate has stayed stubbornly at around 28% of the population, according to household surveys collated by the UN Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC). The proportion that is extremely poor (with a daily income of […]

Coffee News

money-bankruptcy

Via ABC:  Up to 5 Cups of Coffee a Day OK, Gov’t Advisory Committee Says You can consume up to 5 cups of coffee a day, or up to 400 milligrams of caffeine, without detrimental effects, according to a new report that will help shape the official government dietary guidelines due out later this year. […]

The Internet is Getting Faster

internet-world-wide-web-spider

Aaron Brazell explains why “THE INTERNET IS ABOUT TO BECOME WAY FASTER.”

Politinerds: The Andrew Malcom Interview

Politinerds

This week on Politinerds, Jazz Shaw and I interview Andrew Malcom, currently a columnist at Investors Business Daily, and previously a national and international correspondent for The New York Times. Andrew’s time in journalism stretches back to the era of the Vietnam War, the 1968 Democratic National Convention, and Watergate. During his time at the Times, […]

Oklahoma Bill Would Ban A.P. U.S. History

Students in Classroom

The Oklahoma Legislature is considering a bill that would ban the teaching of Advanced Placement American History in the state’s public schools: Some lawmakers in Oklahoma want to make Advanced Placement U.S. History history. What’s their beef? The course, which was redesigned by the College Board and implemented in high school classrooms last year, isn’t […]

Washington Monument Shorter Than Previously Thought

washington-monument-address

Surveyors have determined that the Washington Monument is shorter than it has been believed to be for the past century: WASHINGTON (AP) — Government surveyors have determined a new height for the Washington Monument that’s nearly 10 inches shorter than what has been thought for more than 130 years, officials will announce Monday. The new […]

Denmark Terror Attacks and Machine-Gun Censorship

travel-suitcase

Yet another attack on religious freedom in Europe.

Barbara Bush Changes Mind on ‘Enough Bushes’

us-politics

Lest there be any doubt, Barbara Bush wouldn’t mind a third POTUS in the family.

Oregon Gets First Openly Bisexual Governor in American History

us-politics

Oregon Secretary of State Kate Brown (D) will become the first openly bisexual governor in U.S. history when Gov. John Kitzhaber (D) resigns Wednesday

Nasty Weather

intellectual-invention

Winds gusting to 55 mph took the power out last night around 730 pm and it cycled off and on throughout the night.

Justice Ginsburg “Not 100 Percent Sober” During State Of The Union

Ginsburg Sleeping

During the State of the Union Address in January, cameras caught Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg appearing to doze off about half way through the President’s speech. As it turns out, the Justices were apparently partying prior to the big event: Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg admits to sharing some wine with her colleagues […]

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